Obesity Risks Among Latino Immigrants in Rural Iowa

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2014-10-01
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Byrne, Michaela
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Greder, Kimberly
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Human Sciences Extension and Outreach
Human Sciences Extension and Outreach provides research-based information and education to help families make decisions that improve their lives. As the outreach arm of the College of Human Sciences, faculty and staff work together with specialists located across Iowa’s 99 counties to translate university research to practice for local individuals, families, employers, and communities. Human sciences outreach focuses on food safety, nutrition, wellness, caregiving, parenting, relationships, and personal finance for people across the lifespan. Human Sciences hotlines and call centers offer assistance with home and family questions, stress counseling, financial concerns, and legal questions. One of its hallmark programs, the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14), was named the most effective program for decreasing the onset of drug and alcohol problems in youth out of 6,000 prevention and intervention programs. The Pan American Health Organization and the United Nations has adapted SFP 10-14 for use in other countries.
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Latinos are Iowa’s largest and fastest growing minority group, and comprise 5.5 percent of the state’s total population.1 Between 2000 and 2013, Iowa’s Latino population experienced a 104.7 percent increase.1 Over the last 12 years, Latino enrollment in Iowa’s K-12 schools more than doubled.1 While rates of obesity have increased among all population groups, obesity is highest among Latinos and other racial and ethnic minority groups. 2,3

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